I once blogged

I once blogged quite frequently, but it has been many years (8-9?) since I’ve done it regularly. I’ve been noticing a great benefit of the decline of Twitter: I’m returning to reading blogs more, typing in specific websites that are not Twitter or Facebook and enjoying reading people’s writings. Many people are starting Substacks and I even find myself paying for several. At the same time, a return to blogging feels more vulnerable at this stage of my life. Being young and reckless on the internet was fun, but I’m no longer amped up by debates with people about the fine points of critical thought in facebook comments or dunking on people through my quote tweets.

Why start a blog now? Writing a book can be a solitary process. I enjoy many elements of the solitude but always do my best thinking out loud with other people. Other reasons to blog again: at the same time that writing a book is the most pressing task for my career, I am increasingly trying to cut out whatever I can that is not giving me more time for my other serious interests: woodworking, songwriting, cooking, playing with my dog, making a life with people I love. This means social media, mostly. But I can’t stop wanting to scratch the itch of connecting with people on the web. The internet has been a gift and a curse for me. I was exposed to a world of people that helped me break out of the confines of a narrow Christian conservative world, people who took seriously the desirability of cultivating an intellectual life, and amazing resources for learning to do so many things myself.

It can be easy to simply give myself over to the social media algorithm gods and my anxiety. But, when I’m feeling discouraged and doubtful about my work, about sharing things outside of my text editor, about simply talking about what interests me and not trying to make a move into becoming an academic influencer (if you ever catch me on Canva making explainer slides for Instagram, you’ll know something has gone very wrong), I try to remember to simply take the next best action and get over myself.

Subscribe to Amaryah Shaye

Don’t miss out on the latest issues. Sign up now to get access to the library of members-only issues.